Hundreds of Missouri Dog Breeders Rolling Over

Megan Lynch

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – Hundreds of Missouri dog breeders have tucked tail and left the business.

The Missouri Alliance for Animal Legislation says more than 500 commercial kennels have closed up shop since January 2009.  That’s when animal welfare groups first launched a statewide ballot campaign to clean up the dog breeding industry.  That initiative ultimately led to a compromise on new standards earlier this year.

“I think this signals that many of these people were in it for a quick buck, and the welfare of the dogs was not their primary concern.  Once they realized that they have to meet more stringent regulations, they’ve chosen to get out of the business,” says MAAL Executive Director Bob Baker.

Baker tells KMOX he expects such a dramatic drop in licensed facilities will mean increased state inspections for the breeders who have stayed in business.

Copyright KMOX Radio

  • Karen

    Yea? Or are they just dropping their licesnses and continuing to breed dogs as unlicensed breeders? Seems hard to believe they’d give up on their investments in dogs & equipment that easily.

    • Bayleigh

      Maybe the ones that have left are the ones that were going to retire anyway. Why is it you people always think the worst of these people. Look in your own closet before you start opening doors that you have no idea whar is behing them!!!!

  • Karen

    If I was the inspector, Ithe first people I would inspect are the once who have “given up” on dog breeding.

    • Patrick

      You would inspect someone who is no longer breeding? i think that would require a warrant…..

    • Bayleigh

      Tats real intelligent!

  • Dog Heros

    Oh, now it has gone from basic regulations to stringent. I would leave a state that has Dog Nazis, too.

    • earthshoes

      Nazis? Really? Nazis tore families apart, torturing and killing thousands of people because of their race and religion. Asking people to provide minimal humane care for animals, who live half-lives as it is, is hardly the same thing.

      And–fyi, if you didn’t want to meet those requirements–especially after the state legislature removed most of the bill’s best features–we’d be glad to see you go.

      • Dog Heros

        Dog Nazis are tearing apart families lives through propaganda that evoke horror iimages in the minds of people toward all breeders. These dog haters are not just asking for common sense dog care because they want it impossible for anyone to have a litter so no one can own a dog. No Births = No Dogs. Have you ever had a litter and know the care, work and expense involved or are you just spewing Dog Nazi trash.

      • earthshoes

        You’re kidding right? The only “horror image” in my mind is the dog in a pen whose only human contact throughout his/her life is linked to minimal physical care–pens cleaned twice a day, fed and watered on the same schedule. Vetted once a year–bathed (maybe) every six months. Bred almost immediately after the last litter is weaned. How much affection do these dogs get? How well do they bond with the people who care for them? How can the breeder judge whether this dog or that is going to provide puppies with solid temperaments and brains? When they’re dealing with hundreds of dogs and thousands of puppies–they simply can’t. And that is why the puppy in the pet shop window business model needs to be a thing of the past.

        What these people want is to separate the good breeders from the bad ones–and THIS is common sense. Good breeders do not keep hundreds of dogs. Good breeders are those whose dogs are pets first so they can judge the temperament of the dogs they’re breeding. They do not breed en mass without regard for the quality and temperament of the dog. They neuter and spay puppies that won’t be good representatives of the breed and sell their puppies to those who understand the commitment they are making when they make the purchase. They say no to people who are not good candidates for the breed and suggest dogs that would be better suited to their lifestyles. They offer health guarantees for their puppies and take them back if there are any problems with them. They do not sell to pet stores, thus preventing impulse buys and cutting down on the number of unwanted dogs that wind up in animal shelters.

  • Susan Weaver

    I wonder what the financial impact on the state is going to be because of this? How many feed/dog food stores are going to loose business? How many people are going to be out of jobs and then sucking up the welfare money that YOU naive people are putting into the pot.

    Dogs are livestock. Period. People have the right to make money. Period. You Naive People(I have a different word for you but am going to be nice) are ruining the rights of free enterprise—–and one day I pray it comes back to bite you in the ass….which it will.

    • earthshoes

      Do people have the right to make money at all costs? Are you good with an unregulated industry that produces sickly, malnourished puppies and/or genetic disorders? Are you good with animals raising young in filthy pens with poor access to shelter? Because this is what we saw before the crack down.

      Pet food stores acquire the bulk of their sales from private citizens. If sales are suffering it is because of the overall economy, not because a few hundred puppy mills have gone out of business. By the way, they’re not–in fact the pet industry (food and supplies) is one of the few that’s continued to make a profit during this economic downturn.

      Funny prayer, by the way. You might want to look up the meaning of that word.

      • Wayne P

        According to the State of Missouri it has been reported that for everyone that has gone out of business one or more has made application for a new license.

        Must be a slow news day for anyone to interview Bob Baker, He has no legal authority, does not represent the state and the little piddly group is hardly a political force. Basically a bunch of AR nut cases.. They may even be dangerous..

        Missouri is the Home of the best Animal Husbandry breeders in the world. People like Baker need to get out of town, who the heck does he think he is to comment on Missouri in the first place.

        What is this business of a Quick buck bubba? You have no idea how expensive it is to have a kennel. I don’t think Baker has ever had a business or raised an animal , but for some reason he wants to tell others how to do it.

        I love to hear his stores about Missouri kennels we have checked them out.. How come the only person that has any recall of his claims is Bob Baker? There are not one report of any of his reports on file with the state

        Well like I said it must be a slow news day in St Louis..

  • Dog Heros

    No earthshoes I am not kidding. You are spewing AR trash and some truths. The same horror images you have in mind is the very worse of the worse and the likes of HSUS use the horror photos over and over again. To help puppies…NO…to get donations to pay their 6 digit salaries and continue to lie to you and the public about breeding dogs. The very nature of the dog laws restricting breeding comes from the mindset that breeders are innately bad and must be controlled. There are animal cruelty laws for anyone that is abusing animals why single out and make laws just for breeders.Wake up people MOST breeders are NOT like the horror pictures so quit making laws that tie their hands or you won’t find a dog to own. It is because of breeders educating pet owners that the shelter numbers have reduced greatly over the last 30 years when there really was a problem. If all shelter dogs are fixed and breeders have little to do with the dogs in shelters (more AR trash) and breeding is reduced to a very few you are not going to be able to find a dog. No Births = No Dogs

    • earthshoes

      No. I’m “spewing” first hand experience and my opinions (I am no fan of HSUS). I didn’t need propaganda to help me form this viewpoint. I have seen it first hand.

      Tell you what, you tell me what the day in the life of a typical dog in a typical commercial breeder’s kennel is like. Tell me how long they are likely to live like that. Tell me how often a female is bred, how many litters she will likely have in her lifetime. And tell me that this what quality of life these dogs will have.

      Then tell me how these breeders make sure that ALL those puppies they sell to pet stores and their ilk get good homes and how they educate owners they never meet.

      If you noticed in my prior post, I am not against good breeders–I described them in fact. What I am against is large, commercial breeders who raise hundreds of dogs at a time with little thought for the outcome.

      • earthshoes

        Incomplete thought in the middle of 3rd paragraph: I thought that big chain pet stores that sold puppies were a thing of the past. After Petsmart and Petco choosing not to sell them, I assumed that anyone that wanted to compete with them would get on board. Silly me.

      • earthshoes

        We’re not about talking cars, we’re talking about living things. Cars can be sent to junk yards when they’re no longer of use to the owner and there’s no fall out. We don’t have to worry about neutering and spaying cars or figuring what to do with their unwanted progeny. Cars don’t get lonely or develop mental illnesses from living in small pens, nor do they need to be socialized to humans in order to produce puppies that will bond with humans. Unwanted dogs wind up in animal shelters, dumped, euthanized, or relegated to a back yard where they they live half-lives and often die alone.

        Our country is over run with unwanted dogs, our shelters are overflowing, we euthanize untold thousands (millions?) of them every day. It is obvious that we need to rethink our strategy and educate the public and stop thinking of pets as something you purchase in a store (or order online!) and get rid of when you don’t want them anymore.

        Ever been to at Petland pet store? As recently as a year ago I wandered into one looking for a particular dog food and was disturbed to find myself looking at cages and cages of puppies, several of which, i was fairly sure were barely 6 weeks old–if that. I was actually fairly naive until then. I thought pet stores that sold puppies My husband, who wanted to see exactly how the process worked, talked with one of the employees. Had we been serious about buying a puppy (not even close), all we had to have was the money. This was just one experience. I could name others, but I’m sure you’re growing bored (and frustrated) with this conversation.

        As for my business? I am a dog owner, a former vet’s assistant, a dog trainer, and a rescuer. You might say that I have a passion for dogs and have for as long as I can remember. I’ve been married for twenty-two years and have grown children, if that’s relevant. I have dogs of my own (all but one are rescues). And I’m a writer.

        What I’m not: I’m not an AR activist or a member of HSUS. I don’t believe in calling myself an animal guardian or a pet parent or anything that raises the status of pets to that of humans. We are dog owners in this family, though we do treat our dogs as honorary family members–a big part of our days are spent meeting their needs. We are not vegetarians, but we do have a deep and abiding respect for life. We are Christians. Compassion first is our creed.

        Thank you for answering my question. You gave me so much information that I don’t need to ask any more questions or point out the flaws in your argument. (And I did know the answer). It’s obvious our conversation is at an impasse. I’m not going to see your point of view and you’re not going to see mine.

        Best of luck in all your endeavors.

        PS. Name calling? Really?

      • Willy


        First of all lets see what is your business and what is not. You are not a cop and you are not a HSUS pervert, you are not An ASPCA and you Don’t work for the corrupt USDA or the State. But you claim to have seen things??? Yeah right.

        We all have “Seen” Things. I am wondering if you hear voices too.

        You are asking what is the typical day like in a kennel for a dog, well they get feed twice a day have unlimited clean fresh water, They are checked twice a day and they have access to plenty of room to run and play in clean safe facilities. They get groomed on average every three or four months or as needed, are seen by a vet at lest twice a year or as needed. They spend time in family groups in their large spacious runs.

        And over all they are very happy, The outside runs are covered to keep the hot sun off of them and inside is normally both heated and air condition breed appropriate

        They probably have a better life than you do.. Bud.

        So what is it of your business… ???? The is not your business.. Next

        Puppies sold to Pet stores.. Well the American Pet Store has been an American Icon for over a hundred years. The Buyers are pre qualified. The Pet Store then are responsible for the new owners.

        This is an incredibly stupid question, How do you know the person who buys you used car from the dealership is going to take car of it the same as you?

        So again it is none of your business. You jerk!

        So you opinion, since you have no experience and you ask really stupid question has no weight in the conversation. Buddy this is simply none of your business. I think you may need to seek out professional help… “You simply are not quite right”

  • Dog Heros

    A typical large commercial breeder gi ves plenty of care including attention and exercise to mom and pups. They have hired help that help with the cleaning and socialization. They have learned everything from good breeding practices to whelping to raising pups. Their pups may not look as close to a breed as someone who shows but their dogs are healthy. Again, what you describe as commercial breeders can be found but they are not the norm and laws are on the books to stop them. All the law does is over regulate honest hard working people who are not what you describe. We do agree that what you see in some kennels is horrible. But animal rights do not believe that any dog can be taken proper care of by man, so there will never be reglations strong enough.for them

  • earthshoes

    They are exactly who I’m describing. I’m not talking about unlicensed puppy mills–I’m talking about breeders who produce hundreds of dogs without regard for their fate. And asking breeders to do simple things like provide more frequent vetting or larger pens or heated/cooled kennels should not be a hardship. If there is such a thing as “good” commercial breeders” then they shouldn’t even flinch when they see the bare minimum standards required by the new law. They should already be meeting or exceeding them. And the fact that their dogs don’t “look as close to a breed” (standard) speaks volumes about the attitude of this kind of breeder–which is “give the people what they want” without regard for what’s best for the dog or the breed.

    By the way, you didn’t answer my question concerning how they make sure that the majority of those puppies they raise wind up in good homes with owners who understand the commitment they’re making.

    As per exercise and socialization–tell me how they accomplish this–how many hours a day do they interact with these dogs? How many of these dogs spend time in the breeder’s home and under the breeder’s supervision so that the breeder can determine what is the dog’s basic temperament and what is due to a lack of training?

    • Dog Heros

      There is not and should not be a one size fits all.

      • earthshoes

        So because there is not a “one size fits all” solution, the standards should be lowered so that someone’s profit margin isn’t compromised? Why?

  • Dog Heros

    The new standards never should have been passed. Most states have animal cruelty laws…….when enforced they work. Over regulating is not good for businesses or the economy. There is nothing wrong with raising dogs for a living as if profit is not put before the care. We could talk to 10 different long time dog people and their idea of proper care will differ but the individuals in HSUS, behind this law, have no hands on experience with animals yet are dictating to long time dog raisers what is acceptable in a one size fits all.

  • Vet Barnes

    One can tell by the comments that the people who don’t raise dogs know nothing about what they are talking about. For example, female dogs can only be bred once a year as the majority only come in season every 6 to 8 months. she can only be bred around the 12-15 day. Gestation is 59 to 63 days and its another 42 days before they are weaned. She will not come into season until 6 to 8 months after the last day of weaning. So females cannot be over bred. Animal rights radicals like to make it sound like these dogs are churning out puppies every month and that is the lie among meaning they spread. This is the problem with animal rights their view is no more use of animals as food, companionship, service dogs, guide dogs, herding dogs etc. They also don’t want any use of any animal for making medicines this means no insulin, thyroid hormone replacement therapy, or any of the over 300 life saving medicines that are made by using animals. These people are traitors or scam artists to the human race. Human beings require VB12 in the active form found only in meat and without it their brains will not work properly as they become overly emotional and irrational in their thinking. VB12 found in very expensive plant based foods is inactive in the human body. This movement is the product of strict vegans who are suffering from a complete lack of VB12 and one should make sure these people do not get into the position of supervising others. No more than a lion would think of not eating a zebra this new fad of animal rights does not work at all because biologically human beings are designed to need and eat meat. We don’t need to eat as much meat, but 2 out of every 5 human beings cannot get protein from any plant source due to gluten intolerance and more will be in the same situation as they get older. When all domestic animals are no longer allowed to be property then the only solution will be the demise of all domestic animals as most cannot survive on their own. With no more cats comes the black death as rats will increase by the thousands. Right now rats eat over 20% of all food supplies and if they increase dramatically in numbers that plant food will disappear as it did in Australia and China where the rat populations exploded. The black death is still around being carried by rodents in the southwest and only feral cats keep them at bay. Here we are idiotically spaying and neutering every feral cat under the assumption they must be somebody’s lost pet when in fact they are truly a wild animal doing their best to keep this country free of rats and mice. Feeding them stops them from doing their jobs for which they were born. Animal rights groups are being this end of all domestic animals because they do not think in the real world regarding the implications of their actions. They think only in overly emotional responses to animals. They cannot see how nature has designed all life to support other life forms and that they are intertwined. This is not about animal welfare for the animal rights people, it is about emotional thinking that will damage the ecosystem, all domestic animals and human beings on this planet.

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